The majority of veterinarians (DVM) are still in private small, large, or mixed animal clinical practice, but county, state, and federal governments, universities, private industry, zoos, wildlife organizations, racetracks, and circuses are also some of the diverse settings in which veterinarians work. Most pre-veterinary students obtain a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) or Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree while completing the requirements for admission to veterinary school. Veterinary schools do not require or prefer a particular undergraduate major. Veterinary medical schools recognize the importance of a strong foundation in the natural sciences – biology, chemistry, and physics – and mathematics. Successful applicants often have several years of experience working with veterinarians or in animal-related research and volunteer work. Applicants must complete course requirements and demonstrate proficiency in the sciences as evidenced by the science GPA and the scores on the required standardized test (GRE or MCAT).
Veterinary schools have different requirements for admission and you will need to become knowledgeable about individual requirements as soon as possible. The 28 veterinary schools in the U.S. typically require one year of college-level work in each of the following subjects: general biology, general chemistry, organic chemistry, general physics, English, and mathematics. You are encouraged to consult the Veterinary Medical School Admission Requirements (VMSAR), and visit the website of the Association for American Veterinary Medical Colleges (www.aavmc.org). Most schools require a balance of social science, humanities, and writing classes. Some require special courses such as animal science or nutrition that may not be available at JMU.
Please contact Dr. Christopher Rose, Coordinator of the Pre-veterinary Medicine Program, for more specific information.